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Best way to learn Turkish?

(15 Posts)
AlexTurnersmicropone Sun 31-Aug-14 20:57:58

I have wanted to learn another language for a long time, at school many years ago I was very lacking in confidence and dropped French.

I feel very drawn to learning Turkish, we have a few very good Turkish friends who I could maybe practise with, we've been invited to a Turkish wedding next year in London. We recently went on holiday there and loved the country. Am I being a bit unrealistic? should I stick with French, German or Spanish as it's easy to find classes?

I'm confused by all the different methods, Rosetta Stone (which I couldn't afford yet), LiveMocha? I found this online as well: easyturkishforbeginners.wordpress.com/

IrenetheQuaint Sat 06-Sep-14 17:26:27

Turkey is lovely, and the language is not that hard (well, not at the very basic level which is all I know). Presumably there are no evening courses near you?

It is hard to keep up the motivation to learn a language all by yourself. Duolingo is supposed to be bringing out a Turkish option at some point which I'd really recommend as it's fun, thorough and free.

magimedi Sat 06-Sep-14 17:35:44

I have to disagree with Irene. I can do basic tourist Turkish, as I go there every year, along the lines of: "Great to see you again, how are you?" "Can I have a kilo of those apples, please" etc.

A few years ago I did do Turkish evening classes & once you start to get beyond the basics it is very hard, as it is a language based on vowel harmony & agglutination.

Agglutination - I had to look it up as didn't know the correct term.

I am sad to say that I dropped out of the classes as they were at the end of a very long day at work & the teacher was not very good.

I do learn a bit more each time I visit, but I don't really get the chance to practice it at home so what I have learnt tends to slip away.

I know Rosetta Stone is v expensive but I have heard there are ways of getting it cheaper.

If you have Turkish friends in the UK I reckon you could enlist them to help, especially if they also wanted to improve their English.

AlexTurnersmicropone Sat 06-Sep-14 18:02:06

Thanks for your responses. Our friends are all fluent in English but are happy to let me practise on them. One of them said to me today that she finds it hard to read Turkish newspapers as they go to another level. No evening classes where I live. I have found another site called "Turkish Language Class" which is free and I'm going through the grammar building blocks on there. I've also found a couple of great apps for vocabulary building.

CoteDAzur Wed 01-Oct-14 22:52:51

If you are in London, I can give you the details of the Turkish language course that SIL went to.

As magimedi says, it is not hard to speak basic/pidgin Turkish and make yourself understood somehow, but it is quite difficult to learn it properly because it is unlike any language you are likely to have tried to speak before. It is doable, but I would advise a real school with experienced teachers rather than an internet course.

AlexTurnersmicropone Thu 02-Oct-14 16:11:12

Hi CoteDAzure - unfortunately I'm not in London I'm in Suffolk. I've searched and there are no courses local to me, I've learned a bit of vocab on my own using Memrise. Have to say I would love to go to proper structured classes. Maybe I could find a tutor online and learn over Skype or something...

Actually could you give me the details of where your SIL went? it would give me something to think about.

partialderivative Fri 03-Oct-14 18:11:54

I used to teach in an International School in Istandul.

I considerable proportion of the staff had a good grasp of the Turkish language.

Nearly all of them had been shagging a Turk.

Win-win!

CoteDAzur Sun 05-Oct-14 15:56:45

Alex - SIL went to SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies) in London. I hope that helps.

AlexTurnersmicropone Sun 05-Oct-14 18:56:54

Thanks CoteDAzur, yes I've seen their web site, it looks great, would love to go somewhere like that, but it's too far away.

At the moment I am using online, this Turkish Grammar guide so I'm learning about the suffixes and vowel harmony and then on Saturdays I get a little practise with a friend who corrects my pronunciation. If I'm still keen I might consider an online tutor such as First Tutors.

AlexTurnersmicropone Sun 10-May-15 08:13:42

Update in case anyone was interested - Since January I've been having lessons with a teacher through the ITalki website: www.italki.com/
This is a great site for finding teachers and language partners (although for language partners you have to sift through a fair amount of time wasters).
I'm loving the lessons and loving learning the grammar and vocabulary, but it is bloody hard. We have plenty of Turkish friends around us so I'm able to practice a little. I sometimes wonder why the hell I'm doing it, but actually I'm thoroughly enjoying learning for the sake of learning.

CoteDAzur Sun 17-May-15 19:00:58

Duolingo.com now has Turkish language courses online. Although I'm not keen on translation as a language learning method, it got my DC into reading/writing Turkish and I'm grateful for that.

AlexTurnersmicropone Tue 19-May-15 08:01:43

I started Duolingo but I never seem to have time to carry on with it what with the lessons/homework. Memrise is a great app for learning vocabulary.

Interested to know why you're not keen on translation as a language learning method, I think you have to start off with a bit of translation though? I understand thought that many subtle things get lost in translation, I find what helps me is seeing a breakdown of how the word/sentence works if that makes sense.

CoteDAzur Tue 19-May-15 11:21:39

Alex - Translating a bit works well for learning a language if it is very similar in syntax to a language you already speak. For example, I was already fluent in English when I started learning French, and I did translate quite a bit in my head initially when constructing sentences in French.

Translation isn't great when the language you want to learn is completely different in grammar and syntax to English. Sentence construction is so different that translation is only possible when you make a completely different sentence (sometimes with totally different words) to arrive at the same meaning. It is much better to learn such different languages as a baby does - one step at a time, without translating - so that you can then master that language without being constrained by the rules of your native language and words just flow instead of having to go through mental translation every time.

When I was learning English, we were not allowed to have dictionaries at all for the first year. My teachers were all native speakers (English, American, Canadian) and did not speak a word of Turkish. It was awkward in the beginning but we were soon speaking, writing, & reading. In the second year, we had English-English dictionaries. Never in the 7 years I studied in English at my secondary school & high school did I lay eyes on an English-Turkish dictionary.

user1474912363 Mon 26-Sep-16 18:58:49

Well it is a difficult language to learn but what makes it more difficult is the fact that there aren't enough language courses out there. I managed to find one but it was far from where I live. Now just studying on my own.

eduardobr61 Thu 10-Aug-17 21:10:27

I recommend www.penpaland.com its a language exchange-based website.

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